JSN Construction, Blue Haus forge finals duel

Posted on Jan 27 2023

JSN Construction’s “Smoking”Jun Tabora splits the defense of Legends Elite’s Ferdie Tobias, right, and Orly Ebuen in their Legends Sports Association Invitational Basketball League masters game last Sunday at the Koblerville Basketball Court. (MARK RABAGO)

JSN Construction and Blue Haus are the last two teams battling for masters supremacy in the Legends Sports Association Invitational Basketball League.

This, after the Top 2 seeded teams vanquished separate opponents last Sunday at the Koblerville Basketball Court.

In the first game of the masters Final Four, JSN Construction took its own sweet time to dispose of winless Legends Elite before prevailing, 111-88.

Legends Elite was motivated to pull the upset rug from under JSN Construction from the get-go and even led by a point, 17-16, after the first 10 minutes of action.

Blue Haus’ Martin Moreno pulls up for a jumper against Vizion Insurance’s Fradel Cedilla in their Legends Sports Association Invitational Basketball League masters game last Sunday at the Koblerville Basketball Court. (MARK RABAGO)

JSN Construction woke up a little bit from their stupor thanks to some timely hits from “Smoking” Jun Tabora and James Abuy as they entered the halftime break with a 45-39 advantage.

But Sonny Ebuen and the rest of Legends Elite were not done by a long shot and remained within striking distance of the regular season top seed.

Ebuen was on the forefront of Legends Elite fightback as the sweet-shooting big man shot the lights out from 3-point country and burned all defenders assigned to guard him for 28 points as it was just a 2-point game, 66-64, after three quarters of play.

Legends Elite still was in the game and appeared on the cusp of completing an upset as Ebuen scored 7 straight points at the start of the fourth. But enough was enough and JSN Construction went on to double team him and that stopped the scoring and that led them to the 23-point win.

Tabora led JSN Construction with 29 points with Abuy and center Jorge De Guzman backing him up with 17 and 16 points, respectively.

Ebuen paced all scorers with 35 points with Dick Tibayan and Ferdie Tobias tossing in 17 and 16 points in the loss.

In the second game, No. 2 seed Blue Haus also had to overcome overconfidence before turning back third seed Vizion Insurance, 108-99.

Blue Haus never truly broke away from their opponents and just did enough to maintain their lead.

In fact, the outcome was undecided until the last five minutes of the match after Vizion Insurance cut their deficit to 86-89 on a triple by Dindo Pablo.

Going playful to serious, Blue Haus handed the ball to their veterans as Junar Guiab and Elmer Esdrelon eventually brought them home.

An uncompleted 3-point play by Guiab after a foul by Mike Surima and a follow-up triple by Esdrelon quickly made it 94-86 for Blue Haus.

It became a 10-point lead shortly after a steal and a fastbreak layup by Esdrelon. That was all she wrote for Vizion Insurance as Blue Haus went on to win by 9.

Guiab and Esdrelon were the highpoint men for Blue Haus with 30 and 29 markers, respectively. Fradel Sedillo and Jerry Tolentino had identical 22 points to spearhead Vizion Insurance in the loss.

In games in the open division, Pepoy’s Cafe (1-7) finally won a game after beating JIM Saipan (6-2), 93-87; Marianas Health Services (4-4) beat Vizion Insurance, 79-63 (2-6); Pacific Best Choice (4-4) outplayed Padrinos Tuesday Club (4-4), 82-78; Changming Market (8-1) won via walkover against Al-Ger Manpower (0-8); and Blue Haus (8-0) overcame NAPA Auto Parts (4-4), 89-81.

JSN Construction 111 – Tabora 29, Abuy 17, De Guzman 16, Villarin 14, Montano 14, Wesley 11, Park 6, Manabat 4.
Legends Elite 88 – S. Ebuen 35, Tibayan 18, Tobias 17, Guinto 8, O. Ebuen 6, De Jesus 4.
Scoring by quarters: 16-17, 45-39, 66-64, 111-88.

Blue Haus 108 – Guiab 30, Esdrelon 29, Moreno 12, Berline 8, Estolas 7, Elchico 6, E. Santos 4, J. Santos 3,  Peredo 3, Alano 2, Buenabajo 2.
Vizion Insurance 99 – Tolentino 22, Sedillo 22, Catalla 14, Surima 11, Saplan 10, Pablo 8, Sangoyo 7.,
Scoring by quarters: 26-20, 52-41, 76-70, 108-99.

Mark Rabago | Associate Editor
Mark Rabago is the Associate Editor of Saipan Tribune. Contact him at Mark_Rabago@saipantribune.com

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